Topic: Gotta be the shoes...  (Read 2565 times)

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Offline Rylie

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Gotta be the shoes...
« on: September 22, 2010, 10:58 AM »
I know this subject has been discussed here at DC before, but I have to relate my personal experience regarding the connection between one's foot and the kick pedal.

For one reason or another, I have been playing in my hiking shoes for the past two years. I don't "hike"...that's just the kind of shoes I wear every day. I had purchased a pair of Chuck Taylor sneakers and they worked great for drumming, but because of a Plantar Faciitis issue, I need to wear shoes that provide better support and allow the use of gel pads in the heel area. The Chucks don't provide that.

I recently found a pair of Converse skateboard-er shoes with zig-zag pattern gum rubber soles and wore them to my last gig...with the heel pads in them. I could not believe the difference in the reduction of stress and fatigue in my calves that resulted from not having to keep relocating my feet on the pedals, or conciously holding them in place. I was also more fluid and controlled on the kick and hats, and just played better all around as a result.

I know real pro's can play with 4" heels, roller skates or Corfam tap shoes on, but these really made a difference for me.



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donelk

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Re: Gotta be the shoes...
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2010, 11:26 AM »
Shoes do make a big difference for all of us.  Hey, do you primarily play heel up or down most of the time?

Offline Rylie

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Re: Gotta be the shoes...
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2010, 12:00 PM »
Heel down, mostly, but I have been working on learning to play heel-up. Especially for situations that call for a heavier or faster kick pattern.

I can certainly see the advantages of heel up for speed and volume, but I'm struggling with finesse using that method. Just a lack of practicing it, I'm sure. I suppose I could play around with spring tension and such to help with that, but I play with a pretty tight pedal spring as it is.
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Offline Larry Rankine

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Re: Gotta be the shoes...
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2010, 01:47 PM »
I've been using a pair of Sketchers skateboarding sneakers for some time now and they are my favorites.  I play both heel up and heel down and like these better than the Converse sneakers.
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Offline Chip Donaho

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Re: Gotta be the shoes...
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2010, 02:44 PM »
I've done so much playing with various styles of shoes. Of couse in the Army Band I had to wear highly polished combat boots. I got so used to that guys wondered how I could play with steel toe work boots on. I would play gigs in my roofing boots too. What pedal I'm using bothers me more than the shoes/boots do. I tried barefoot or socks too but went back to wearing boots. As long as I have some flex and can feel my toes I'm good.  :)
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Offline Big Yummy

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Re: Gotta be the shoes...
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2010, 11:40 AM »
More power with heavy shoes, more finesse with lighter shoes.

More strain on the calves with heavy shoes, more punishment for the feet with lighter shoes.
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